Arizona assistant coach Joe Pasternack issued a statement attempting to explain his interaction with California forward Jorge Gutierrez in a game Thursday night, although it stopped short of an apology.
Pasternack appeared to kick Gutierrez as he jumped into the Arizona bench area while trying to retrieve a loose ball with 4:45 remaining in Arizonas 78-74 victory in Berkeley. As Gutierrez returned to the court, he immediately pointed at Pasternack and had to be held back by Cal teammates.
I would like to clarify that my actions (Thursday) night were a reflex in response to a player falling on top of me while running at top speed toward our bench. Prior to my arrival at Arizona and as a former head coach and assistant coach for eight season at the University of California, I have great respect for the Pac-12 Conference, the Cal program and Jorge Gutierrez and the competitiveness he brings to the court, Pasternacks statement read.
In no way was I deliberately attempting to engage h...